Mesa police have identified a construction worker killed and another injured Wednesday morning when portions of a support structure they were using to build a bridge collapsed.
The victim is Steven Ariston, 43, of Peoria. The second worker, identified as 20-year-old Alejandro Meraz, was flown to Scottsdale Healthcare-Osborn, Mesa Fire Department spokesman Capt. Forrest Smith said. The worker suffered serious injuries and is in stable condition. Two other workers were able to get out of the way, Smith said.
Smith said the construction was on a portion of an overpass and that the support beams, or I-beams, under the concrete collapsed about 6 a.m.
The work is being done by Ralph L. Wadsworth Construction Company, LLC on a new Arizona Route 24 Gateway Freeway, which will connect Ellsworth Road with Loop 202. It's the company's first project in Arizona.
Smith said the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was expected on the scene later in the day.
The Arizona Department of Transportation said the bridge near Hawes Road and the Loop 202 Santan Freeway was not open to traffic.
Ralph L. Wadsworth Construction Vice President Fred Buonocore released the following statement Wednesday afternoon:
"Ralph L. Wadsworth Construction Company is deeply saddened to report that an accident at the Loop 202 construction site in Mesa took the life of one of our valued employees. Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to the family and friends of the deceased, and our thoughts and prayers are with them. We are fully cooperating with the Arizona Division of Occupational Safety & Health (ADOSH), which currently has an investigation underway to determine the cause of this incident. Because of the ongoing investigation we are unable to comment further at this time."
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